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Bristol Water Reservoirs 2018
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lakefisher
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 12:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not mentioned as far as I can see is the re-instatement of "The last hour" of boat fishing. The loss of which was explained to me as "a health and safety problem"

This can only be that as the previously available last hour happens - it gets dark. To an electrician (like myself) its a very easy solution - install photo cell / timer operated flood lights covering both CV jetties - now its no longer dark, and the H&S department no longer have a problem. Rolling Eyes Photo cell switches the flood lights ON as the light levels fall, timer (2 hour) switches them off and re-instates photo cell control after a timed delay into the following daylight. - simples.
Boat fishers robbed of the best hour of fishing on a H&S decision has annoyed many folk - including me ....... Evil or Very Mad

It would also be helpful to me as a Pike fly fisher (only) if BW published something in their "weekly report" from the pike catch returns I (and others) keep putting in the returns box Rolling Eyes ......... Tony Cool
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

malerogue wrote:
JH is now the new fisheries manager and should be given time to settle in and stamp his direction on the the fishery.


Welcome maleroque, and thanks for your input. I agree John should be given a chance to see what he can do, despite his role not being as comprehensive as previous 'fishery managers' like Bob handford. Very Happy

csfcodhunter - in reply to an earlier point you made, there were no 'suits' at the meeting. I believe the meeting to be a BWF level initiative to involve their customers rather than a BW initiative and if I was a betting man (and I'm not) I would say it was probably John Harris's idea. To be honest I'm not sure I would want to give up my evenings at this point to hear slick corporate platitudes from 'suits'. I did that last January at a Forum with Steve Smith in the Sailing Club and I spent too much of my working life doing that to want to go back to it again in my retirement too!

Although I know many dismiss it as 'tinkering', I am not convinced that positive changes cannot be achieved within the resources available provided there is the will to accept new ideas and resources are managed more effectively. There has been some (not enough) new investment which BWF has decided to spend on bringing the Ranger team back up to 2012 levels so there should be no excuses if things don''t improve.

Having said that I strongly believe the time is coming when anglers, or our representatives, will have to meet the BW 'suits' as part of what I believe should be a wider, concerted campaign involving other interested parties to demand an improvement in water quality. That is the big one and I believe it will take more than a few concerned anglers like ourselves to crack that particular nut! Neutral

Tony - good point. The 'last hour of fishing' is a sore subject with every boat angler I've met and should be easy to remedy as you suggest, although there would be a cost (extra hours for staff rather than the negligible extra electricity) . This has been pursued for years by the BRFFA and others and was mentioned again but discussion is always shut down using corporate 'Health and Safety' rules as the excuse. Not sure if there has ever been a proper (and I mean proper) risk assessment carried out and whether any reasonable adjustments have ever been considered to make this practice acceptable to H&S , but that would require commitment. In my experience H&S is often seen by some organisations / lazy managers as a convenient excuse to stop things happening. Just think about it for a moment - if that was the case, 'Elf & Safety' would require every Port and Marina in the UK to shut down at sunset and I don't think that happens, do you? Rolling Eyes Mad

All great stuff guys. Please keep your thoughts coming, either on here or by PM if you prefer. Smile

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 2:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Apologies Al - didn't mean to denigrate the efforts you have/will put in by the clumsy use of the word "tinkering" but I hope you know what I meant.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 4:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tenet wrote:
Apologies Al - didn't mean to denigrate the efforts you have/will put in by the clumsy use of the word "tinkering" but I hope you know what I meant.

Absolutely no offense taken, Doug. To ask for peoples honest opinions then take offense when they express them would hardly be a useful approach for me to take! Very Happy Laughing

Although I seem to be in 'constructive' mode at the moment don't be fooled. I am just as BLOODY ANGRY as everyone else to find that after just a few short years, things have been allowed to deteriorate to the point where the very future of trout fishing on Chew had been put at severe risk and my retirement dream of bobbing about in a boat on Chew was heading for the rocks, due to nothing short of corporate negligence! Evil or Very Mad

OK - now I have got that out of my system its time to get back into 'constructive Alan ' mode again. Rolling Eyes

Has anyone else got any other thoughts that they wish to share? Laughing

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 5:08 pm    Post subject: on a lighter note... Reply with quote

Good stuff, Alan.

Frankly I think we all have every right to be angry and I'll pass on my Tibetan "Healing Bowl" that is guaranteed to reduce stress and assist with anger management.

I really do think you have made an outstanding start on this. The comms are excellent and there is clearly no shortage of ideas.
As an aside...is anyone else on the Committee communicating anything outside this Forum that we should read?

Perhaps one current thought is that all of us should now move on and stop criticising individuals within BWF.
I recall a bout of this a few years ago and after a while it became counterproductive IMO.

Let's give them a chance to learn and grow and hopefully put things right. At least the Forum has you "in the tent" now so we need to show appropriate restraint and keep it zipped up!!

Best,
McFly
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 6:56 pm    Post subject: Re: on a lighter note... Reply with quote

mc07fly wrote:
As an aside...is anyone else on the Committee communicating anything outside this Forum that we should read? McFly


John asked those on the Group to consult with other BWF customers and I did see something from Carl Garratt in one of the pike groups on Facebook basically reassuring the pikers that trout fishing would be continuing. Other than that I think each Group member will consult in their own way. I decided to do it this way because this forum hosts the long established 'Bristol Water Fisheries' thread and will attract more comments from more individual trout anglers than the number I am likely see before the season starts ... and probably afterwards too! Laughing

It is also worth noting that this thread is read by many more local BWF customers than those who have actually signed up and take the time to comment regularly. I also know that this number has included both BWF and BW in the past and that they are very well aware of its existence Wink

I made John aware that I intended to use this thread as a sounding board after the meeting and I suggested he look in from time to time. I hope he does. Smile

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 7:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tenet wrote:


If people to feel conned if they turn up spending their hard earned on the promise of a good experience only to find that they consistently blank, ergo we are back to the reason for inconsistent catches and the reasons why that has been happening.



De ja vu.......!! That’s what’s been happening the last few years!!

1) Hand graded fish then you catch one a 1lb then one at close to 3lb.....The only hands grading those fish would be Jeremy Beadles!!

2) “No idea why it’s tough, the fish are going” ......Then the declaration that several tens of thousands of fish had been lost over a couple of years.....I’m not accusing, but it easy to draw conclusions!
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

arkle wrote:
Tim, with the apparently low numbers of returns actually being "returned" this is all well & good, but there's still no way of judging the fish that are predated after being returned. So this can only ever be an inexact science.



Agree......

1) get as close to 100% returns as possible. It just takes a bit of effort and enforcement of good habits. With the new rangers being appointed, there should be ample man power to chase as and when required
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 7:53 pm    Post subject: Re: on a lighter note... Reply with quote

Allrounder wrote:
mc07fly wrote:
As an aside...is anyone else on the Committee communicating anything outside this Forum that we should read? McFly


John asked those on the Group to consult with other BWF customers and I did see something from Carl Garratt in one of the pike groups on Facebook basically reassuring the pikers that trout fishing would be continuing. Other than that I think each Group member will consult in their own way. I decided to do it this way because this forum hosts the long established 'Bristol Water Fisheries' thread and will attract more comments from more individual trout anglers than the number I am likely see before the season starts ... and probably afterwards too! Laughing

It is also worth noting that this thread is read by many more local BWF customers than those who have actually signed up and take the time to comment regularly. I also know that this number has included both BWF and BW in the past and that they are very well aware of its existence Wink

I made John aware that I intended to use this thread as a sounding board after the meeting and I suggested he look in from time to time. I hope he does. Smile

Alan Wink




Hmmmmm.......From personal experience if John hears /reads anything he doesn’t like he does tend to get all pi55y. Hopefully more responsibility will encourage an improved pragmatic and mature approach.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 8:02 pm    Post subject: Re: on a lighter note... Reply with quote

Appleman wrote:
Allrounder wrote:
mc07fly wrote:
As an aside...is anyone else on the Committee communicating anything outside this Forum that we should read? McFly


John asked those on the Group to consult with other BWF customers and I did see something from Carl Garratt in one of the pike groups on Facebook basically reassuring the pikers that trout fishing would be continuing. Other than that I think each Group member will consult in their own way. I decided to do it this way because this forum hosts the long established 'Bristol Water Fisheries' thread and will attract more comments from more individual trout anglers than the number I am likely see before the season starts ... and probably afterwards too! Laughing

It is also worth noting that this thread is read by many more local BWF customers than those who have actually signed up and take the time to comment regularly. I also know that this number has included both BWF and BW in the past and that they are very well aware of its existence Wink

I made John aware that I intended to use this thread as a sounding board after the meeting and I suggested he look in from time to time. I hope he does. Smile

Alan Wink




Hmmmmm.......From personal experience if John hears /reads anything he doesn’t like he does tend to get all pi55y. Hopefully more responsibility will encourage an improved pragmatic and mature approach.


Agree appleman. JH has to now step up and make things "happen" and take the customers with him. Honeymoon period is definitely over.

He is in danger of becoming known as someone who if he does not like what he hears, he throws his toys out the pram. I do not blame him for the demise of CV but he has to demonstrate some compassion to the customer which starts with engaging with them (as per my earlier post), challenge the suits to ensure change happens and ensure that change is followed through with committed actions. A big ask I know.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Appleman wrote:
1) Hand graded fish then you catch one a 1lb then one at close to 3lb.....The only hands grading those fish would be Jeremy Beadles!!


Some fish are cage reared and released straight into the lake, so giving the impression that all fish are hand graded for size will obviously lead to suspicion when smaller fish are caught.

A good example of where a lack of transparency and openess doesn't do the fishery any favours. Sad

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:37 pm    Post subject: Blast from the past! Reply with quote

Good evening gentlemen, it is with great trepidation that I once again enter the fray. I should to start by sending my regards. I hope you are all in good health and wetting your lines regularly.

I have two posts to make and then I will be returning to the shadows. I am more than happy to talk further about the plight of the fisheries with anyone but please contact me privately if you wish to catch up.

Although I may not have endeared myself to everyone during my time at the lakes I do hope that the clear majority of those who I crossed paths with in my previous role will have grown to recognise that all I wanted to deliver was a vibrant, financially viable recreational fishery. In turn this would have allowed the department to support their staff and deliver an unsurpassed angling experience to the punter, regardless of their angling persuasions.

Ultimately, I wanted to develop and manage a fishery that would only ever be equalled, but never surpassed. BW were in a strong position to realise this ambition due to the strength of the trout and pike fishing brands. In return BW could sleep easy knowing the fisheries were healthy and any investment from core business would be directed into servicing other elements of the public amenities. Basically, ring fence income/expenditure to enhance transparency! What could be better?

And then………………2015 arrived!

Now three years later the height of their ambition appears to be stringing a net between two jetties and filling it with suicidal stockies so they can hopefully entice newcomers to the art of fly fishing. Meanwhile a piece of land that would perfectly accommodate a small, purpose built put-and-take fishery sits on your left as you approach Woodford Lodge doing nothing. Visionary stuff.

Surprisingly BW management seem to be suggesting to both staff and angler steering groups in meetings that during my tenure, while Bob Handford was still sat in the chair as senior manager on a part time basis, that there were concerns over accountancy and the value for money that company received from the cross charge for Reservoir security/lakeside services. These concerns were never represented during any meeting, correspondence or performance appraisal. Is it possible someone is finding reasons to justify their own existence by pretending they inherited problems that never existed in order to look busy?

Now here’s some food for thought for the business elite sat in HQ………….

If the department was structured and operated correctly I can absolutely guarantee you that the fisheries would be viable. I explained how to make that happen in Autumn 2014 shortly before a new lakeside services manager was parachuted into the department.

So, if you flip BW’s rationale on its head, could anglers not reasonably question how far their permit fees go towards subsidising the presence of staff around the lakes 365 days a year? Given the 100% price hikes in CVL pike prices, introduction of fly piking on the wee lake in 2017 and reduction of staffing overheads (by cutting loose the most promising, fisheries qualified staff) it is astounding that they were on the brink winding down the angling amenities due to losses.

Regardless of what happens at the fisheries, BW would still incur costs for lakeside services. So, let the fisheries stand on their own two feet with a professional, motivated team running it and then install a small team of lakeside services staff to maintain the non-fisheries amenities funded directly by HQ.

You guys are expected to pay a premium to then be treated as an inconvenience!

Sadly, the attitude of those pulling the strings for the past few years has been that “they are our lakes, we can do what we like”.

Or that’s what they thought. Until the BRFFA, AT and MPs stepped in. Although I was never one for towing the company line I don’t ever remember having parliament scrutinising my ability to manage a fishery.

And now anglers are being promised a new dawn. Starting with the recruitment of five new staff that with some luck will may have some sort of interest in angling and fish husbandry. Very reassuring.

Also, I wouldn’t blame all your piscatorial problems on the water quality issue. Yes, it is poor, and the EA reports could be a potential embarrassment to BW on the water supply side. However, had the fisheries been managed and staffed appropriately over the past few years I doubt there would be much need for BW to be forming steering groups consisting of paying customers to help them how to operate their business! All you need to do is look at Season 2016. They took all your money and then admitted losing 40,000 fish at an end of season review.

One massive own goal after the next.

Enough of you seem suitably sceptical, so I am confident that they won’t wriggle free from this easily. However, I am confident things will get worse before BW are forced to grasp the nettle and affect the necessary changes.

Good luck. Lord knows you will need it!

Best regards,
Tony
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My second post is simply to address the comments made previously by two forumites.

Doug, you may be surprised to know that my frostiness towards you was directly due to your persistently negative comments on this very forum. You offer a very subjective, narrow summary of your fishing experiences which, in short, always comes back down to finding reasons as to why you didn’t catch, rather than working out where you could have improved. The new BRFFA mentoring scheme may be right up your street if you wanted to expand your loch style C.V and learn how to consistently put more fish in the boat. I greatly enjoyed my fishing experiences at Chew and ultimately achieved two international caps and gold medals by cutting my teeth at arguably the most diverse and challenging large stillwater in the UK. In the spirit of putting the past behind us, I would like to offer to purchase you your first Di7 line complete with ‘hang’ markers. Let me know which line rating you require, and I’ll arrange for one to be sent to Woodford Lodge for you. I'm sure one or two of the other forumites would be prepared to furnish you with a small selection of blobs and boobies to complete the set up?

Malerogue – Season ticket sales remained steady throughout my tenure. Some stalwarts left, retired or departed us altogether, while new blood signed up due to a feel-good factor that had begun to develop by Season 2013. The season ticket holder you refer to was banned for repeatedly gutting his fish on the bank and discarding the innards into the lake edge. This was of course against fishery rules and a serious biosecurity issue that compromises fish health integrity and jeopardises the whole operation. The season ticket quota was brought in to align angler expectations with permit prices. When you receive a catch return from a season ticket holder who has retained 1150 trout with a capital cost of around £3000 but paid £800 for their season permit something has got to give. You are correct, the engines have been hugely popular at Blagdon. In fact, they were a contributing factor to the 20% increase in angling revenue during my tenure. All Blagdon petrol engines are modified to prevent excessive speed. Should any rogue captains be patrolling in near your swim, get them reported so a member of the ranger team can ensure the throttle limiter is reinstated.

Finally.

Please do try to enjoy your fishing guys, it’s supposed to fun!

Tight lines for 2018,

Tony
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for your incisive comments Tony - I think you have just confirmed my previous thoughts regarding your personality. Sad
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 14, 2018 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it is fair to say after TDs post you all now know (if you did not before) some of the issues at BW, (also why my “negative posts” sometimes caused friction among us).

In 2016, trying not to be blunt, EVERYONE WAS CONNED by BW. Lies, lies and more damn lies were given out ref stocking policy/no.s etc. They lost a huge amount of fish and never told us. We had to find out via other sources. When I challenged BW at the state of the fishing during 2016 season, was when they told me “to go and fish somewhere else if you don’t like what we do”. Complete and utter arrogance.

Quite frankly, unless there is real change at the top at BW around fishery management policy, I hold out very little hope for a turnaround as quite frankly NOONE TRUSTS BW!

Apologies for the negativity but whether you like or dislike TD - facts are facts!

TRUST needs to be earned by BW. I do not trust this lot!

Thanks TD for posting. You did a good job in promoting the fishery as far as I am concerned and the catch no.s speak for itself when you were there. It is also vitally important that everyone is told the whole story and not the bits BW want you to hear.
People do need to know what has been happening.


Last edited by csfcodhunter on Sun Jan 14, 2018 10:45 am; edited 1 time in total
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